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VPS Warns of Bunker Contamination Crisis in Singapore

Image Credits: Ship & Bunker

Repost: Testing company VPS has warned of a bunker contamination crisis developing in Singapore that could potentially be on the same scale as the one from Houston in 2018.

The firm, along with Maritec and FOBAS previously, has identified chlorinated hydrocarbons being found in Singapore bunkers over recent weeks, a representative told Ship & Bunker on Thursday. The firm first alerted its clients to the issue on March 11.

In February and March VPS identified 34 vessels that had received HSFO deliveries from two Singapore suppliers with up to 2,000 ppm of chlorinated hydrocarbons, the company said in a statement.

“These bunker fuel contaminations have affected 14 vessels so far and the impact has been failure of the fuel system to the auxiliary engine resulting in loss of power and propulsion creating a blackout,” VPS said in the statement.

“Fuel system failure arose from seizure of the fuel pumps and plunger and barrel corrosion, caused by the bunker fuel contaminants.”

The HSFO fuel delivered met the ISO 8217 specifications in each case, and VPS found the contaminants using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry testing.

“The cause of this recent Singapore fuel quality issue is due to different chemical contaminants to that which VPS identified back in 2018 as the cause of the Houston fuel issue,” the company said in the statement.

“However, the number of cases identified at this time in Singapore is at a higher level over the first six weeks compared to the number identified in Houston over a similar time period.

“The associated problems due to this latest fuel contamination regarding asset and vessel protection, crew health and safety and potential environmental-related issues, can and will have significant impact upon ship operators, in terms of costly damages and repairs, voyage delays and time-consuming claims, all drawing on their resources.”

Ship & Bunker

Marine Online Media Team
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